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View Full Version : So I want to "Bob" a VLX 600



dwood
02-12-2015, 10:12 PM
So up until about 2am last night when I should've been studying I had no idea what bike I wanted to start a build on, but I think I've figured it out. I saw a VLX600 and I think that's the bike I want. I really wanted to stick with the Honda and I also wanted a twin.

Before I jump into this are there any "known" issues that I should be aware of?

Hotel
02-13-2015, 9:15 AM
Hey man. The shadows are a great bike by themselves. If im not mistaken that bike is chain driven, plus for looks, negative for maintenece. Twin backbone will be a pain in the ass if you ever wanna swap tanks unless you chop. What year is this bike.

chasmccall
02-13-2015, 9:25 AM
The older ones (pre-98?) were dual carb, newer are single carb. The dual carb setup is harder to tune if you remove the airbox and you're going to want to remove the airbox and that butt ugly air filter. As mentioned, all years are double backbone.

dwood
02-13-2015, 2:29 PM
I'm thinking that I'll try and find something '01-'03 or in that range. I would definitely want to stick with something that's single carb. I told my mom to sell me her shadow 750 so she can get a bigger bike. She just laughed at me though...

The chain driven aspect is really a plus for me. Not sure why, but I've always preferred the chain driven stuff. I know with my race bike doing things like the 520 sproket conversion does wonders on things like corner exit speed. I'm not taking this thing to the track or anything, but would that have any positive impact on something like the VLX600? Or should I stick with things like engine work if I really want more power?

Also...twin backbone how much of an issue would be? Just a *simple chop off the top part of the frame and weld on something new? You can tell I have a lot of experience doing this stuff right? Changing the wide tank out is going to be a must.

dylanjoseph29
02-13-2015, 5:24 PM
The 600 is slow. You can do the pipe, jets, and timing mod but there isn't whole lot of power to be had. If u ride sport bikes you'll definitely be dissatisfied with the vlx power. That said I have one and I love it. Just dnt want u to expect performance

Hotel
02-13-2015, 7:22 PM
Well, First off, the vlx has a pretty nifty frame and suspension design. The shock is hidden under the seat giving off the look of a hardtail. you'd have to break off into one and see or find a picture of the frame on the internet but you might could run twin backbone from the rear and join it under the seat, then run single up towards the neck. That'd keep the softail.. Or you could go hardtail and convert to single backbone too. Just doing backbone would be easier, you wouldnt have to focus real hard on if the rear tire is standing straight, trailing correctly, etc. Theres a lot of guys on here that can help out a lot more but that's my 2 cents.

chasmccall
02-13-2015, 10:57 PM
The chain driven aspect is really a plus for me. Not sure why, but I've always preferred the chain driven stuff. I know with my race bike doing things like the 520 sproket conversion does wonders on things like corner exit speed. I'm not taking this thing to the track or anything, but would that have any positive impact on something like the VLX600? Or should I stick with things like engine work if I really want more power?

It's a 600. And a 4 speed. With about 50 hp. You aren't going to turn one into a performance bike. These are basically around town cruisers. The most common mods are getting rid of the airbox and the associated EPA stuff and going with either a pancake filter or a velocity stack, rejetting the carb, and a 4 degree timing mod. You can go with a lower tooth count rear sprocket to make it more comfortable for highway driving.


Also...twin backbone how much of an issue would be? Just a *simple chop off the top part of the frame and weld on something new? You can tell I have a lot of experience doing this stuff right? Changing the wide tank out is going to be a must.

Installing a single backbone is not difficult if you've done something like this before. It sounds like you haven't. Paying to have someone do it can be cost prohibitive depending on where you are and who you know. Buying the equipment yourself and learning how also isn't cheap. There is one guy who sells a peanut type tank that's a bolt on for the VLX. It's $550 I think. It's expensive but price out either buying the welding equipment or hiring someone to do the backbone swap + the cost of the tank you want and see which is the cheaper option.

dwood
02-14-2015, 4:47 PM
Awesome thanks for all of the info guys. I have welding equipment at home and some people that could weld just about anything so I think I'm ok there. Hopefully we'll avoid some Murphy's Law crap in that process..

I definitely don't plan on making this a performance bike, and I wouldn't plan on taking it on the interstate often (people are crazy..). But I live like 20~ minutes from the nearest town so everywhere I would be riding would be back roads.. The big thing that comes to mind is when I ride my moms Shadow 750. Its got some kick 0-50, 60-80 its starting to get mushy, and beyond 80 there isn't much. I definitely don't plan on driving it 100mph everywhere I go..I'll leave that for the track, but I would like to be able to ride at highway speeds without being near the top of the bikes limit.

I guess I'll just see and if it needs some more balls I can do some engine work on it after a while.

Hotel
02-14-2015, 6:01 PM
yeah, the bottom line of the it is, its a 600. I rode a 440 kaw around the county maxing out at 65 mph. i know the feeling.